Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond has resigned with immediate effect.
The move comes less than a week after the bank was fined for trying to manipulate inter-bank lending rates, sparking a government inquiry and calls for criminal investigations.
Mr Diamond said he was stepping down because the external pressure on the bank risked “damaging the franchise”.
BBC business editor Robert Peston said the Barclays boss was encouraged to go by the Bank of England and the FSA.
“They were unable to force him out,” our correspondent says, “because the recent FSA investigation into how Barclays attempted to rig the important Libor interest rates did not find him personally culpable.”
“However, as a regulated institution, it was impossible for Barclays’ board to ignore the revealed wishes of the two most powerful regulators in the City.”
Earlier, Lord Turner described the outrage at the bank’s actions.
“The cynical greed of traders asking their colleagues to falsify their Libor submissions so that they could make bigger profits – has justifiably shocked and angered people, in particular when we are facing hard economic times provoked by the financial crisis,” he told the Financial Services Authority’s annual meeting…
Chairman Marcus Agius, who had announced his own resignation on Monday, will now take over the running of Barclays until a new chief executive is appointed.
The bank refused to comment on reports that chief operating officer Jerry del Missier, one of the executives to give up his bonus after the Libor fine was announced, was also planning to step down.
Mr Diamond will still appear before MPs on the Treasury Committee on Wednesday to answer questions about the Libor affair.
- BBC News